A Riddle in Life

By brian francis

When I was young excitement kept driving me
Making me spin like a dreidel gone wrong
Pushing me, pulling me, spinning me crazily
my parents would moan what now has he done
deep in the woods when no one was watching me
just me and the forest as it whispered its song
I would go running or climbing my favorite tree
Jumping and laughing without worry or fear
’cause no one was near
because no one was near

They sent me to school telling me to be real good
And God how I tried, how I fought to fit in
nobody there could seem to connect with me
They saw me as trouble and fed me their pills
just one and I didn’t stop, my spinning continued
then two and then three, till I slept on the floor
that was their aim it seemed a stilled little boy
Hog tied with chemicals I was lost and confused
’cause I wasn’t there
because I wasn’t there

back then to my parents relief, I was a calm boy
still and much easier when they fed me the pills
The clouds of my mind a thick fog – my reality
memories hidden, thought processes stilled
that was my life I was depressed and dejected
The boy found within, unwanted, learned to hide
I still found the forest my favorite seclusion
instead of running and jumping I slept or I cried
’cause I thought no one cared
because I thought no one cared

Copyright © 2020 brian francis

Surrounded by Love

By brian francis

Oh, to be home in this season of giving
To walk the old lanes where I walked as I grew
The crunch of the snow, the crystal reflections
The potential of Christmas about to come true

The rhythm of sleigh bells as they jostle and jingle
Down backcountry roads in the hollow of my youth
Songs sung with shivers, and warm knitted mittens
Singing about the story believed, accepted as truth

The smells of the cinnamon the clove and the nutmeg
Eggnog so lusciously rich as you drink
The lights and the colors, the strings and the tinsel
Bring back the magic of Santa’s joy-filled wink

The meadow light, still seen from my window
Revealing the snow, as it silently falls
just like the child who once sat here nodding
Waiting for Santa’s elusive reindeer’s paws

Memories tickle and ooze out in moments
Here in this place so surrounded by love
Remembering seasons lost to the ages
And songs to honor our Lord God above

Copyright ©2020 brian francis

Broken Wing

by brian francis

I watch the sun rise, and pass on overhead,
And I see the others flying south again.
I wish that I could go, but I’ll stay here instead,
my broken wing and I fighting against the wind.

Winter is coming; the leaves are turning brown,
the nights are getting cooler, and darkness lingers on.
Low clouds on the horizon are telltale of the storm.
Whispers beckon in the wind coming from the north.

I feel it as it touches me, the cold, cold hands of fate.
I know that I can’t get away, so I’ll lay here and wait.
While on wings far overhead, the others pass me by,
Oh, how I want to join them, but my broken wing can’t fly.

Cold rain falls upon my back; cold wind blows in my face.
Soon the numbness touches me, then soon the light will fade.
Then I will cast away this shell, its broken wing and all,
To start on a new journey, I will fly into the sun…

Copyright ©2020 brian francis


By brian francis

Errors made in acts and words
Burden the soul, worry the mind
Efforts suffered in younger days
Often Ill-considered and unkind

Selfishness is that cancer within
Tainting your thoughts with greed
Making your garden once bright
Overgrown with that thorny weed

Late in life those memories persist
when we had the chance to be kind
instead we chose the cardinal path
a moment of joy; torture resigned

Yet imagine a soul so perfectly clean
An indemnifier of all one might do
A virtuous redeemer with Midas’ touch
A creation of mind to cleanse you

Copyright © 2020 brian francis

Season’s Chill

By brian francis

The stars wonder down upon snowy white hillsides
And trees decorated with a glistening dew
Sounds echo long and are crisp in their sounding
The lights of Christmas cast a colorful hue

The scrunching of snow compacting with each step
The chill of winter advances its war on the world
Bundled in layers our defenses concurring
battle is constant repeated attacks being hurled

Having faith in the wool and the linen encasing us
Going about life’s tasks with a grinding resolve
The bridles, the horses, the bell covered harnesses
A sleigh ride to carol, honoring he who absolves

Copyright © 2020 brian francis


By brian francis

Oh his cloths are torn and ragged
And his face is worn and grey
He does not look into your eyes
Instead he turns away

He makes you feel uncomfortable
Just seeing him around
He doesn’t ask for handouts
But he doesn’t turn them down

He once wore ties and leather shoes
And drove a fancy car
He once went home to a child’s arms
And wished upon a star

But everything that comes can go
And everything that lives can die
And every man with happiness
Can soon learn how to cry

He sits there in the summer’s heat
And shivers through the winter’s cold
A shadow of the man he was
Lost deep in despair’s hold

Copyright ©2020 brian francis

The Precipice

By brian francis

the edge is clean and distinct
a breaking point of history
where a nation for whatever reason
choose to turn away from themselves
they deny their very sense of morality
the deceiver smiles and laughs
anti everything good and decent
mirror mirror on the wall
who’s the leader of them all

He rose from mammon
raised his sign above them
plated in gold it shown like the sun
He smiled and was pleased
they called out his name
and he smiled and glowed with pride
“I can do anything and they will praise me”
“I demean them and invade their person”
“I can do anything I want”
and they cry out his name

Copyright © 2020 brian francis


By  brian francis

When dreams are cast away
and sorrow’s burden settles
When torment rips at one’s soul
and empties all vitality
hollow canyons wail
where once satisfaction flowed

We torment ourselves
with imagined outcomes
merely begging for another chance
Pain filled pleadings to grace
But the linear nature of our reality
precludes our delusion of possibility
spent, time passes inexorably on

Heavy is the only way to describe it
the feeling of one’s chest
when bound in the struggle
enduring the aching of regret
resilience bides its time well
and creeps in starts and fits
toying with memories
inspiring brief moments of joy

Healing comes as sure as morning
the taste of life once again
scars can often change perspectives
and make unsure our path ahead
tears will fall in spurts and sputters
but so will joy and laughing spree
somehow unknown life re-blossoms
we dare reach for the sun again

Copyright © 2020 brian francis

The Porch Swing

By brian francis

As the summer evening settles
Lightning flashes up on high
Rain drops sing a staccato rhythm
Thunder rolls across the sky

Here alone with you beside me
Knowing you are my closest friend
You lay your head upon my shoulder
And teach me to love you once again

Hearts that break can also be mended
Mistakes we’ve made – steps untrue
Torture’s lonely moments haunt us
Through it all I still love you

The flash becomes a screaming sizzle
And crashes to the nearby ground
The roar of thunder jars the moment
Deep inside you can feel the sound

Hearts together reach for solace
Smiles relieve the moment’s fear
Arms engaged in a gentle holding
Eyes awash with the salty tear

I know of love because I found you
After years of roaming all alone
Sitting here on this porch swing
Holding you I have found my home

Copyright ©2020 brian francis


By brian francis

You can see this shattered place
Its bones still lay upon the land
Orderly rows of columns rise
Obelisks throughout it all
Memorials of this place of horrors
Where the meek huddled
Awaiting their demise
You can imagine them walking bye
Letting a hand brush the bricks
As they pass

Trains have left their tracks behind
Detached from the mainline
Like a limb amputated for its cancer
Still, the great gate stands welcoming
Its edifice the shame of a nation
A secret side door into hades
The starved flesh worn Innocents
The chosen; cinders and mass graves
Echoes with the cries of sorrow and sadness
Tears fall now for the idea that was thought
How could it be done

Gone are the guards who fled in shame
Images in black and white reveal insights
Sardines, barely able to lift their heads
When Hammer and sickle brought liberty
Seasoned soldiers used to death
Cried and bawled at the real truth
Man’s sins anoint us all in here
We walk away with nightmares dancing
Upon our minds as we feel the cancer
Our garment becomes shame

Copyright © 2020 brian francis